Saturday, February 29, 2020

Senryu: The Color Of...

Image by Enrique Meseguer from Pixabay

something unwanted
the color of blood on cloth
in the dark of night


I recently wrote about an event that happened closing in on 40 years ago that was more of a turning point than even I realized until I started writing about it. You can read the piece here.

Tan Renga Wednesday on Saturday: Cherry Trees in Full Bloom

springtime is coming
hope to put the longer days
to practical use
shadows become longer
cherry tree in full bloom grows

~Chèvrefeuille & cie~

Once my son and I are done clearing out that blasted mobile home (the one where I lived for 18 years and he lived for close to ten) we will finally be able to concentrate on what we want to do with our new home. I would like to plant a few dwarf fruit trees. I've always loved cherries, both as a fruit and a plant. I try to keep looking to the future, to have aspirations but also keep in mind the need for practicality due to my health issues.

The Ageku of this Renga is © Chèvrefeuille. The Hokku was written by me.

Carpe Diem Love Month: Moonlight Moving: A Fetch Story Poem

Image by Syaibatul Hamdi from Pixabay

the moonlight moving
across a traumatized sky
above a dead world


I have not been well. My diabetes has decided to behave in a more completely shitty fashion than it had previously done, so not only do I find myself dealing with the frustration of contending with this garbage condition, I find myself mired in self-loathing because I learned at a young age that anything shy of physical perfection was a personal failure. I will say with unflinching honesty that if it weren't for the fact that I still serve a purpose in assisting my son, I would punch my own ticket. I realize that suicide ideation is an uncomfortable subject, but please refrain from the blah blah counseling blah and blah blah medications blah rhetoric. Counseling doesn't help, and psych meds cause me to become manic and psychotic, two things that I, shockingly, don't enjoy being.

This poem describes the dead world of Zetar 6 (Zecor), a key player in the Fetch Universe. Fetch is Team Netherworld's flagship story, which was born in early November of 2014 when I was working at the retirement community where I would work for close to 11 years. The idea was born when I learned that someone who had meant a great deal to me for many years had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. This person was only 55 years old at the time of diagnosis--the same age that I am now. 

In my shock and grief, I walked through the vast retirement community and was prompted with the idea of finally starting a project that I had envisioned taking on for close to forty years. I had always wanted to write a backstory for the Lights of Zetar, a Star Trek episode which has been universally panned by critics and which has its problems, but has, nonetheless, always fascinated (and scared the bejeezus out of ) me.

The inspiration to finally begin this project and to incorporate it with my beloved Cthulhu Mythos came from a mind other than my own. I will not go into detail except to say that this inspirational individual was noncorporeal, and you can think whatever the hell you want about that, I'm not going to argue with you. I refer to this presence as Gem, and I am deeply grateful to him for the gift he gave me. I am saddened by the fact that when I am gone, the door to this world will close. No-one enjoys my work, and I am well aware of that. My writing style is entirely unappealing to most people, and my personality even more so.

I love you, Gem, but sometimes I am not sure if you possess much in the way of good sense. If you did, you surely would have chosen a scribe who was less of a complete and utter train wreck of a human being to be your co-conspirator.


Friday, February 28, 2020

Fat Friday: Tone Deaf

Don't you just hate it when you've managed to start pulling yourself out of the psychological sewer of despair and had the personal fortitude to back away from the suicide booth although your body is doing horrible shit up to and including activity which inflicts literal cognitive changes, and it would be easier just to die and get it over with, and along comes a tone-deaf concern troll who proceeds to unleash a coronal mass ejection of NOPE all over your post? I know I do.

Would you, reading this paragraph:

I have to fight all the negative messages about my body several times a day every day and probably will for the rest of my life. Forget "loving" my body. I would be happy to be able to just ACCEPT my damn body and move on. But jerks who begin sentences with "it's okay to love your body, but..." do their level best every day to make sure that I will never even be allowed to just accept mine.

Decide to argue that the most relevant thing the person who wrote that paragraph can do for their health is to fall back into the clutches of diet culture and begin trying to hate themselves thin again. I know I...


I mean...

What the actual fuck.

Concern trolls always think that the rules don't apply to their sage wisdom.

I don't know, y'all. Sometimes I think I'm just done.

Image by John Hain from Pixabay

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Wordy Thursday: Opaque

Young Adult/Paranormal Romance/Sci-Fi

Three out of Four stars for Online Book Club, 
Three out of Five stars for Amazon

If readers purchase a copy of this book through the above link, I will earn a small commission from Amazon.
This review is a duplicate of my Amazon review for this book.
I received an advance copy of this book for review purposes.

Read my exclusive Online Book Club review for this book here.

This story has a fascinating premise and compelling characters. Adam is a young man who is unaware that he has superhuman abilities until Carly comes to his school and teaches him the truth about himself. Adam initially presents as potentially being a sociopath and certain of his actions and their consequences (or lack thereof) are the reasons why I question whether this book should be categorized as a young adult novel although the protagonists are teenagers.

Adam experiences romantic attraction to his mother. Although the author avoids graphic detail, incestuous fantasies are a rather taboo subject, perhaps best left in adult fiction. At one point, Adam's disturbing behavior leads to the death of a young woman and he suffers no real consequences for his actions. I found this plot device unsettling.

The book suffers to a degree from The Twilight Problem. "You can redeem the bad boy" is a terrible message to be imparting to young girls. Carly, Adam's love interest, is so concerned with saving Adam that she ignores his abusive and violent actions. For a female character to be completely wrapped up in saving a significant other who presents a danger to her sends a dangerous and frankly sexist message. I am frustrated by stories which present female characters only as foils and helpmates to badly behaved males.

Further, I was appalled by the frequent references to Carly's apparently ample yet shapely buttocks and to the scene describing her stripping down to her underclothes. I found it unsettling to be reading a voyeuristic description of a teenage girl undressing.

I nearly stopped reading this book when the author made the unfortunate decision to use a psychological condition as an adjective to describe certain of Adam's behaviors that Carly found irritating.

"She sighs at his bipolar actions.”

The author is using the term "bipolar" to mean mercurial or changeable, and this is an utterly offensive thing to do. Individuals who live with bipolar disorder are as varied in their behaviors as those who do not have this condition. I am 55 years old and have type 2 bipolar disorder. I do not tend to present as mercurial or changeable and, in fact, I tend to present as staid and sedate. What people do not see below the surface is the fact that I am constantly fighting against low self-esteem and suicide ideation. The battles of me and others with this serious psychiatric condition should not be reduced to an adjective describing undesirable behavior on the part of a character in a novel. To do so is extremely dismissive and insulting. I would hope that no-one would ever say something like "she sighs at his cancer actions" to describe the behaviors of a person who is weak and tired. Why in the world would anyone think it's okay to do this sort of thing regarding psychiatric conditions?

Although I found the characters compelling, to a degree I also found them two-dimensional. Adam's father was the only character who wasn't Hollywood-pretty.

If the reader can overlook these faults, they will likely be drawn into the story. It is probably okay for older teens to read this book, but I would advise against giving it to anyone under sixteen.

Image copyright Open Clipart Vectors

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Suspending Literary Services

Howdy Solks...I mean Folks.

Due to recent changes in my health, including my cognition, I have opted to suspend my literary services except for those I do for Online Book Club. I make a small amount of money working with them. It was a grand total of about $5000 last year, but it's better than nothing.

Diabetes is a garbage disease. Just when you think it's done fucking you up, it will fuck you up some more. 

My guess would be that my time on this scuzzy ball of dirt will be terminated by something relating to diabetes unless I decide it isn't worth it to keep fighting the tide and decide to punch my own ticket.

That being said, I want to spend the remaining time I may have to work on my own writing and helping my son prepare for the time when I won't be around to assist him anymore, which may be sooner than I have anticipated. I worry about this because although there are some things he does very well, he will not do well being completely on his own.

If I still believed in God, I would bargain with the fucker. But from what I have seen, if he exists, he enjoys being a dick. So I'm not even going to include him in the loop.

I am not in a great place psychologically and haven't been for a while. 

No unsolicited advice, please. Like the kid in the picture above says, I really don't believe that chewing seaweed covered in whale urine while standing on my head and reciting ancient mantras backward is going to lead to my diabetes going into remission, my thyroid healing itself, my hair reversing its grayness, and me suddenly being converted from a hideous old fat hag with a face that could destroy worlds to a Conventionally Attractive Hot Supermodel of a Socially Acceptable Size as drooling dudebros literally beat down my door to get a piece of this. I fucking wouldn't want that shit even if I could have it for the asking.

Okay, I would take the diabetes reversal and the thyroid healing. As for the appearance stuff, fuck you if you really think I'm less worthy of being treated with common courtesy because I'm not young, thin, and pretty, and the dudebros banging on my door sounds like something out of one of my nightmares.

I'm kind of thinking it would be better if I put the kibosh on comments for this post because I really don't have it in me to deal with that shit. If I want to interact with you regarding these thoughts, you already have my email address.

So...yeah. Now you know what's going on with me, for what it's worth.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Money Monday + About Me Monday: WTF is an Influencer?

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

In my quest to try and return to blogging about ways to make and save money, I headed to the Rakuten website to copy my referral code. For those who aren't aware, Rakuten, formerly known as Ebates, is a site where you can save money when you shop through their links. You can also get an extension for Chrome which will cue you if there is a potential to save money through Rakuten at a site where you are shopping.

There was also an invitation at Rakuten's site to apply to become an influencer.

At this point, most of us have probably heard the term "influencer." But like me, many of you may be saying "that's nice and all, but WTF is an influencer, really?"

According to this Quora site, an influencer is "a person who has the ability to make a group of people follow him and take him as an example due to his personality, authority, success, goals, values, abilities etc. He inspires people and becomes an anchor that keeps people together in other words he builds a community around him."

So, you know, probably not me.

According to YouTuber Critical, as seen in the video at the end of this post, an influencer is generally an egotistical douchebag who will go to extremes to feed their own narcissistic need for adulation. Hopefully, that isn't what people think of me.

Generally, I tend to see "influencers" as being fake. I don't do well with fake. I have no desire to be seen as a trend-setter. I don't care whether or not people think I'm attractive, and I am certainly not the height of fashion. I'm more like the anti-fashion broad.

I have something to say, but if I have to pretend to be something I'm not to get followers, then those are not the followers for me. I don't necessarily even want to be seen as a "leader." I make plenty of mistakes and if I decide to jump off a cliff, I don't want people jumping off after me just because I thought it was a good idea at the time. If I had my druthers, I'd like to be seen as a teacher who had the capacity to entertain.

I'm not an expert on...well, anything, really. I do know a little about blogging but I have a bit of a prickly personality and I don't play by the rules. I've been following a blogger named Janice Wald for several years now and I would recommend her to bloggers wanting to learn how to build a social media presence and monetize their online efforts.

There is a link to one of Janice's books at the end of the post. If you purchase the book through the link, I will receive a small commission from Amazon.

Janice has a weekly blog hop called Inspire Me Monday. I won't be linking there this week because this post isn't entirely family-friendly. My language didn't get too spicy, but my pal Critical definitely turns the profane heat up to Habanero!

Your Ornery Hostess with the Mostest,
Aunt Cie

Carpe Diem Love Month: Animal Friends: Senryu

all my little friends
there have been far too many
can't do it again


There are people who have said to me when I say that I won't get any more cats because I can't bear to lose any more cats that I'm being selfish.

I lost five cats in the space of five years, and I've lost many more before them. There are many that I can't think of without it bringing tears to my eyes. I've also lost quite a few people. I am pretty well numb with grief. I think that it's cruel to tell someone in my position that they are being "selfish" for wanting to avoid further pain. 

Inflicting guilt on someone who is already suffering is the ultimate in thoughtlessness.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Elephant's Child: WEP/ISWG February 2020 Challenge - Cafe Terrace

This was so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes. I always resonated with Van Gogh. There was something wonderful and kind about that beautiful, misunderstood soul. I wish I could have been his friend.

I said to my son that the only thing I really fear about death is the knowledge that my words (and worlds) will be lost. My only hope is that I may join the likes of Van Gogh and Lovecraft in posthumous fame.

Some of us have so much to say, but because we are different, no-one hears.

Come As You Are Party: Wired Differently or Just a Flake?

Image by Wolfgang Eckert from Pixabay

It is my hope to back away from apologizing for who I am and instead explain about myself so that those I interact with might develop an understanding of those of us who are wired differently.

I have type 2 bipolar disorder and ADD as well as complex PTSD and OCD. I wasn't properly diagnosed with bipolar disorder or OCD until I was almost 40. I didn't know I had ADD until I was in my 50s. I was just always scolded for being forgetful and distracted. I have always vacillated between being Ms. Wonderful and being that flakey a-hole that everyone hates. I understand why it happens now, but I can't change the past. I wish people would try to understand me a little better, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

My son will be 30 this year. He is high-functioning autistic and has ADHD as well as anxiety issues and major depression. He is very intelligent and has read the entire Amber series (Roger Zelazny), much of Tolkien's writing, The Count of Monte Cristo, the works of C.S. Lewis, and the list goes on, but he can't learn from a textbook to save his life. I think the current educational system does a very poor job of addressing the needs of those who are not neurotypical. 

I technically also have a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder, but it is my opinion that borderline personality disorder is actually a form of complex PTSD and is an outdated and sexist diagnosis. It is almost exclusively applied to girls and women. Everyone who has it has endured some form of trauma, whether physical, psychological, sexual or a combination thereof. 

~Cie the Ornery Old Lady~

Image copyright Open Clipart Vectors

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Blow Your Stack Saturday: It's Not All In Our Heads

If I went to the E.R. every time I felt suicide ideation, I'd have to live there. However, it is impossible to talk about feeling this way for fear of being involuntarily incarcerated (and yes, I do think of it as incarceration) in a mental health facility. I made a promise to myself when I was sixteen, involuntarily placed on the psych ward at the hospital after cutting my wrists, and treated in a shameful and dehumanizing way, that I would never return to one of those places. I have kept that promise to myself for nearly 40 years, and I don't intend to stop.

I also heard many times over the years:
"Oh, just stop looking for attention."
"You're overly dramatic."
"Just stop feeling that way."
"Life's hard for everyone. What makes you think you're special?"
"You bring your problems on yourself."

I stopped telling people how I was feeling and just kept it inside.

Furthermore, there may be non-psychological reasons why a person feels less than thrilled with life.

Try living in extreme poverty (I made less than $5000 last year) but when you go to try and get EBT (food stamps) you and your autistic adult child (who was not even present at the meeting and thus not allowed any say in the matter) are threatened with jail time for "trying to defraud the system" and your physically disabled self is told that if you were "truly disabled you would need a caregiver." I don't need a caregiver, but I can't work a regular job. I do freelance work from home. How the hell many psychologically "normal" people wouldn't start to feel like taking the exit from life if this kind of crap was happening to them?

I've also come to be very angry because of how I was treated when I was sexually assaulted on more than one occasion in my life. It happened in 1980 when I was 15. There was no intercourse so I knew no-one would believe me, but it was sexual assault. I had been a formerly "good kid" except for the pot-smoking and the drinking because I needed an escape from the way I felt because I was constantly psychologically and sometimes physically abused at school, let's call "bullying" what it really is. I started acting out, cutting classes and then cutting myself. Instead of asking questions I was sent to the school counselor who called my parents. When I got home, my mother aggressively pulled up my sleeves and demanded angrily to know "what is wrong with you?" I knew better than to ever tell the counselor anything again. I may have been troubled, but I wasn't stupid.

I later engaged in consensual activity with a boy that I really liked, although this was an ill-advised idea. When I yelled in pain because it hurt, this made him angry or uncomfortable and he abandoned me. It was then that I made the suicide attempt that put me in the hospital.

When I asked: "why do boys only want girls for a piece of ass?" nobody caught on that I might have been sexually assaulted. I was told that I needed to keep myself out of situations where I might be used in that way. All of the onus was on me, none on the guy who assaulted me or the guy who wanted to use me for sex but then dumped me because I wasn't ready.

When I was sexually assaulted at 18, I was told by my father that I shouldn't have put myself in that position. I had a mental breakdown and ended up dropping out of college.

When I was sexually assaulted at 32, I was having back to back panic attacks for most of the day. I needed help. I was given drugs. I don't respond well to drugs. Prozac left me feeling numb and I sat there staring at my arm wondering if I should cut it to see if I could still feel. Xanax made me sedated and then suicidal. None of it stopped the panic attacks, so I stopped taking it. I had back to back panic attacks when I was awake for an entire year and the advice that I was given by my family was that I had gotten over it before when this had happened to me and I would get over it again. I had one so-called mental health "professional" who referred to me as a "basket case."

Although I do have legitimate psychiatric issues (type 2 bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and complex PTSD), there are also environmental factors that contribute to my suicide ideation. People never want to look at those realities. It's more comfortable to believe that the person experiencing suicidal thoughts is simply "disturbed" or "mentally ill."

Cie Has Blown Her Stack

Friday, February 21, 2020

Carpe Diem Love Month + Haiku My Heart: Butterflies, my First Love (Senryu)

Image by Schwoaze from Pixabay

lovely butterfly
small girl cries with all her heart
you lie motionless


I didn't want to write about romantic love. (Blech.) So I decided to write about one of the two things I loved very much as a child. My first experience with death involved finding a butterfly still on the sidewalk on a cold, rainy day while walking with my father at three years old. I was devastated. 

Fifty-two years have gone by since then. My father is now gone too.

Carpe Diem Love Month: Lost Love Senryu

Image by Goran Horvat from Pixabay

I know all too well
the feelings of hopelessness
many useless tears


Fat Friday: Shutting Down the Concern Trolls

This is my response to a post by Ragen Chastain about shutting down concern trolls.

Have you ever tried keto/paleo/whole 30/intermittent fasting?

a: I have, but I care about my health, so I don’t do that anymore.

I had kicked diet culture to the curb before "keto" came along, but I did Atkins twice and a couple of Atkins clones. I ended up feeling like I was going to pass out, I was moody as all fuck, my brain was even foggier than usual, and I felt sick most of the time. I don't remember if it was with Atkins proper the first time or with one of the clones, but my hair became very brittle and started coming out in handfuls. No fucking thanks.

As for "intermittent fasting," that's what I do when my abusive partner ED (eating disorder) comes in swinging and knocks me for a loop. I restrict my food intake (usually full-on starving myself) for a day or more and either sleep so I don't eat or sit there mired in self-loathing. Yeah, that seems very healthy, don't you think?

Fat and Ornery
Image copyright Open Clipart Vectors

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Carpe Diem Love Month: Senryu: Love at First Sight

Image by Thomas B. from Pixabay

it's love at first sight
losing my heart and my mind
damn fool idea


Monday, February 17, 2020

About Me Monday 17 February 2020

You can do this too if you want to. I found it on Tumblr. It was reblogged by another blog from an inactive blog.

0: Height 5′ 6″

1: Age 55 on February 15 and ain’t nobody wished me a happy birthday

2: Shoe size 9

3: Do you smoke? Former smoker quit for the last time in 2006

4: Do you drink? literal sips of beer occasionally

5: Do you take drugs? occasional low-dose edibles

6: Age you get mistaken for 666,666

7: Have tattoos? seven of them

8: Want any tattoos? yes

9: Got any piercings? two on the left earlobe, one on the right

10: Want any piercings? not really

11: Best friend? My son

12: Relationship status I’m not interested in being in a relationship with anyone currently alive on this planet

13: Biggest turn-ons kindness

14: Biggest turn-offs sanctimonious assholes

15: Favorite movie too numerous to mention

16: I’ll love you if… you treat me decently

17: Someone you miss I miss a lot of people and animals

18: Most traumatic experience Well, gee, there are different kinds of trauma. Probably being sexually assaulted but having my car slammed into by a huge wave of water on a road that doesn’t normally have huge waves of water coming across it did a pretty nice job too. What the fuck kind of question is that?

19: A fact about your personality I’m kind of a snarky asshole, or hadn’t you noticed?

20: What I hate most about myself I really just don’t like being me most days

21: What I love most about myself I would probably think I was pretty cool if I wasn’t me.

22: What I want to be when I get older Still alive, unless I’m too compromised

23: My relationship with my sibling(s) Estranged

24: My relationship with my parent(s) Difficult

25: My idea of a perfect date What is this “date” you speak of? I don’t do that shit.

26: My biggest pet peeves People who ask me things like “most traumatic experience” and “what is your idea of the perfect date.” Seriously, people, feel free to ignore those questions.

27: A description of the girl/boy I like Well, at my age, if I were “liking” a girl/boy, that would make me a huge perv. As for the woman/man I like, I used to have a pretty big thing for this guy, so that will give you an idea of my “type”. Nerdy, sensitive, kind, that’s the kind of guy I’d like if I were looking.

28: A description of the person I dislike the most
Why don’t I just show you?

29: A reason I’ve lied to a friend
To spare their feelings when they got a truly awful haircut.

30: What I hate the most about work/school
Higher education is out of reach for many people. I work for myself. My boss is a huge asshole and she doesn’t pay well.

31: What my last text message says
I think it was a message from my doctor’s office reminding me that I had an appointment.

32: What words upset me the most
This quiz is full of shit that makes me get up on my soapbox. So, let’s talk about the “O” word.
Obese is a really shitty word that is used to dehumanize and other larger people. This word makes larger people avoid going to the doctor until something critical goes wrong. It is a hateful, shaming, ugly word. Shame does not encourage people to take care of themselves. It encourages them to hate themselves. When I see people using this garbage word, I get up on my soapbox about it.
I also hate racial slurs. But I think most people know that shit’s bad.

33: What words make me feel the best about myself
I don’t know. How about “hey, Cie, your writing is great.”

34: What I find attractive in women
I’m not into women that way, but if I were I would find kindness and sincerity attractive.

35: What I find attractive in men
Kindness and sincerity

36: Where I would like to live
Where I live now

37: One of my insecurities
How long do you have?

38: My childhood career choice

39: My favorite ice cream flavor
Pretty much anything chocolate

40: Who I wish I could be
Me, except rich and healthy

41: Where I want to be right now
Where I am

42: The last thing I ate

43: Sexiest person that comes to my mind immediately
That’s for me to know and you never to find out.

44: A random fact about anything
The sun is going to become a red giant.

Cressida de Nova: Love Month

Cressida de Nova: Love Month:   it can light up your world then sap you dry and burn you out 

The love that saps one dry and burns one out is something I know very well. For me, it's the love that one has for someone who is terminally ill. You get several of these people (and a few pets) back to back, and it's like everything has been drained away. At least that's what it has been like for me. Sometimes it takes years to recover. I don't know if I ever will. It isn't that I lack compassion, it's just that I feel like a candle that's been burned at both ends and in the middle as well.


Carpe Diem Love Month: The Day After Valentine's Day: Aftermath Most Despised

copyright Viktor Forbacs

on the day after
a terrible thing was born
broken from the start
it should have been tossed away
why was it allowed to stay


I was born the day after Valentine's Day 1965 at 6 of the morning in the middle of a raging blizzard. My life has never been easy and I can't ever remember a time when I didn't think I was bad or wrong. That is what this depressing Tanka is about.

It's kind of sad that I have to say this, but here are the kinds of comments that I don't want to receive for this poem.

"You should consider counseling."

Been there, done that. Some of them were kind of helpful, others were just pill-pushers. It took nearly 40 years for any of them to correctly diagnose my type 2 bipolar disorder. In fairness, type 2 bipolar disorder is a sneaky bitch because it presents with hypomania rather than full mania, so it can be difficult to spot. It's rather like a black and white horse hiding in a herd of zebras.

Also, back in the 1970s and 1980s when I was a troubled teenager, bipolar disorder was called manic depression, and it was considered a psychosis. As my high school psychology teacher said to me when I told her that I saw a lot of aspects of manic depression in myself:

"Honey, manic depression is a psychosis. You're not psychotic. You're just depressed and having a hard time being a teenager."

This well-meaning but ultimately incorrect lady probably just thought I was an angsty Goth girl who read too much Sylvia Plath and melodramatically attributed Sylvia's melancholy poetry to her own overdramatic teenage struggles. In fact, I did see a lot of myself in Sylvia Plath's poetry and I tend to get pissed off at people who chortle knowingly about silly drama queen girls relating to her poetry.

Sylvia Plath and I both had bipolar disorder, and perhaps if a teenage girl is relating to Sylvia Plath's poetry, maybe she's not just a wannabe Goth drama queen, maybe her life sucks and she's depressed or possibly has bipolar disorder. I would love it if society would stop writing off teenage girls' feelings as so much overdramatic frippery.

Also, disabled, on Medicaid, and live an average of 50 miles from the nearest city. I already have to go get P.T. once a week. Not interested in another weekly appointment.

"You should consider medications/get your medications adjusted."

I've been on this planet for 55 years. I've been dealing with mental (and physical) illness for most if not all of them. Do you really think I've never heard this before? Also, for some of us, the "cure" is worse than the problem. I can't tolerate most psych meds.

Further, I have complex PTSD from years of psychological (and sometimes physical and/or sexual) abuse by my peers and "well-meaning" people who wanted to "fix" me. Don't try to "fix" me. 

I already have a chemical cocktail that I have to down every day for all my physical problems, plus I have to poke myself with needles multiple times a day. For those who are wincing about the thought of poking themselves with needles, well, you're lucky if you don't have to, but this aspect of my disease is the least of my problems. I usually don't even feel the needle unless I come at myself from a bad angle. Even when that happens, it's a very minor pain. The needles aren't a big deal. The things the disease can do to my body if I don't use the needles are.

So, yeah. Don't talk to me about meds.

"Wow, this is really depressing. You should try to write about happier stuff."

I write three kinds of poetry: dark, silly, and snarky. Poetry is a way for me to express the deep, inner pain. I am under no obligation to pretty up my poetry because it might make some people uncomfortable.

"Trust that God has a plan for you."

I'm an agnostic. I respect your beliefs. Please respect my lack thereof.

I was a devout Catholic in my youth. However, because I was somewhat unorthodox in my beliefs and was tolerant of those who didn't believe and of homosexuals, I was ostracized and threatened with hell. Even at that, my fellow Catholics were nowhere near as dreadful as the town Fundies. Also, they weren't stupid enough to burn heavy metal records. When that just created a cloud of toxic smoke, I had to laugh. These idiots weren't being countered by any demon, they were just being confronted by their own stupidity.

I'm one of those people who believes that there is a higher power and maybe even personified higher powers. In the interest of brevity, I'll let someone far wiser say it for me.

"Life's hard for everyone. Quit whining about your problems and do something about it."

I do as much as I can every day that I can. I know that life is hard for other people. I'm not talking about other people. I'm only talking about me.

All in all, there is really just one thing to remember.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation: Renga With: Waiting for the Full Moon

Image by Chikai Du from Pixabay

the autumn wind:
thickets and fields also,
Fuha Barrier

© Basho

I look at the turning leaves
see future snow in the clouds

a dandelion
now and then interrupting
the butterfly's dream

© Chiyo-Ni

when I am a butterfly
will I ever dream of you

the thunderstorm having cleared up
the evening sun shines on a tree
where a cicada is chirping 

© Shiki

is there a cool night ahead
or restless humidity

simply trust:
do not also the petals flutter down,
just like that?

© Issa

I have never been the kind
to simply go with the flow

in nooks and corners
cold remains:
flowers of the plum

© Buson

promise of warmer weather
pleasant till scorching heat comes

ancient warriors ghosts
mists over the foreign highlands -
waiting for the full moon

© Chèvrefeuille

will your troubled soul drift in
for another lifelong fight


All the Ageku are belong to me.

Everything else has been credited.

Carpe Diem Love Month: A Snarky Valentine

arrived in a storm
one day after Valentine's
nobody's sweetheart


Don't tell me y'all didn't know it was gonna be snarky.

Trivia for my -666 fans:

I was born in a blizzard at 6 AM the day after Valentine's day 55 years ago. 

A very merry un-birthday to me today.

Carpe Diem Love Month: Rainbow Bridge to the Dreamlands

Image by navallo from Pixabay

in a place beyond
over the storied rainbow
you and I will meet
perhaps in the land of dream
imagined by Lovecraft


I will never get over this
I wish he was here with me

I know nobody gives a flying toss about my notes, but since I'm pretty sure no-one will read this post anyway, what do I care?

I am recovering from a mental breakdown and from a TIA. I am trying to move back in the direction of writing what I want to write rather than what I think will make money. My health is precarious and I don't really know how long I have left on this planet. I worry like hell about developing vascular dementia. I'm not too worried about Alzheimer's because there isn't a history of that on either side of my family. My father had vascular dementia. My aunt on my mother's side probably had Lewy body dementia, although nothing was ever really confirmed. Hers seemed to onset more quickly than Alzheimer's tends to, although I have a feeling she was hiding her memory lapses until she couldn't anymore.

The TIAs I have had exacerbate my ADD. I don't have any short-term memory loss, but there is a change in my cognition. I blame this most recent episode on not having adequate insulin (thanks, Medicaid). My P.A. changed up my prescription so hopefully, this won't happen again. It probably could have been changed sooner but she was on maternity leave, and I am reluctant to see another provider. It is critical that I have a provider who treats me with respect and looks at numbers such as A1C, blood glucose, blood pressure and triglycerides (all things I'm taking medications for) as opposed to focusing on the damn number on the scale, which only triggers episodes of self-loathing and restrictive eating. Anyone who thinks that shaming large people (or anyone else) reinforces positive behavior is dead wrong. All that sort of behavior does is makes people avoid seeking medical care for fear of being shamed.

I write a segment called Henry and Henry for the Fetch universe. Henry is my female protagonist Pepper's beloved cat, who passes away suddenly. He is modeled after my Lafayette.

Henry Kalmar is the spirit of a flamboyant, openly gay New Orleans blues musician who commits suicide on the tenth anniversary of his beloved half-sister's death. Henry is modeled after Lafayette Reynolds, my favorite character in the show True Blood. Lafayette was the namesake for my Lafayette. He was played by the very talented Nelsan Ellis, who died on 8 July 2017 at the age of 39 from complications of alcohol withdrawal. Nelsan's sister Alice was murdered by her husband in 2002. This was something that Nelsan never got over.

Nelsan attempted to stop using alcohol on his own because he was ashamed to seek help for his addiction. This, unfortunately, created deadly complications. Here we have an example of how shaming people for addiction doesn't work. If shame worked, there would be no addicts, no fat people, and no smokers. I repeat that shaming doesn't work, it only makes people reluctant to seek medical care for fear of being shamed by ignorant health "care" providers.

I adopted my Lafayette's half-sister or cousin Tara at the same time that I adopted Lafayette. I suspect that both of them were very inbred. They came from the same feral colony. Both of them had to have most of their teeth removed because of feline stomatitis. Lafayette had problems with his fur falling out and scabby skin which I attributed to a grain allergy and began feeding him grain-free food which seemed to help somewhat. I later misattributed some of the signs of system failure to a return of the feline stomatitis and assumed that he would need the rest of his teeth removed. I had no idea, and I will go to my grave blaming myself for being so wrapped up in working that I missed critical signs. I will never forgive myself.

Henry the Cat meets Henry Kalmar in the Dreamlands, and together they become part of the team trying to save the Cosmos from an ultimate threat headed by Nyarlathotep, the smartest and trickiest of the Outer Gods. This ragtag group of reluctant heroes also includes a snarky Swedish spectre, a benevolent Yithian, a sweet-natured but foul-mouthed Scotsman who departs his cognitively impaired body at night to join the fight, a terminally ill British prog-rock icon, and a couple of good-natured ghouls. 

I let the story languish for five years in favor of attempting to write stuff that I believed would sell. It didn't, and I'm not going to back-burner my beloved project any longer. Would I like for it to have an audience? Sure, I suppose, but sometimes knowing that other people are watching prevents me from unleashing my creativity. So, whatever. 

Generally speaking, I am not the kind of person that other people gravitate to. I have kind of a prickly, defensive personality from years of having to defend myself, what do you know? I can count on one hand the people who will respond to this post, and I thank you in advance.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Fat Friday: Thoughts from an Irritating Overweight Woman

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

As my fan club of -666 readers knows, I review books for a living, such as it is.

I was presented with a book to possibly review, and was, initially, excited. It was a collection of short stories about a group of female friends.

The short story is an undervalued art and female friendships are an undervalued treasure. I was interested in reading this until I saw one of the characters described by another reviewer as "an irritating overweight woman."

The comment about the "irritating overweight woman" gave me pause. Why is her weight such a determining factor in her characterization? Many authors tend to write large people in a negative light. As a person who fights with my abusive partner ED (Eating Disorder) constantly, I don't really need to read works that vilify people who look like me. It's a shame because a good short story collection about female friendship sounded like just the ticket.

I decided to give the book a hard pass.

Authors (like society as a whole) love to scapegoat, stereotype, and vilify large people. I have enough problems wrestling with ED on a daily basis. I don't really need to read fiction putting down people who look like me yet again. ED does that quite often enough.

Fat and Ornery
Image copyright Open Clipart Vectors

Sly and Snarky
Image copyright juliahenze